India got its 79th Grandmaster in Chess, as 16-year-old Pranesh M won the Rilton Cup in Stockholm, Sweden to cross the required 2500 ELO rating.

Pranesh beat GM Frode Olav Olsen Urkedal of Norway to achieve the final norm needed to gain a GM title.

He won his first norm at the 18th Delhi GM Open in January 2020, followed by the second at the Sunway Sitges International Chess Festival in Spain in December 2021. He won the third norm at the Asian Continental Chess Championship in November last year, and finally crossed the required ELO mark to become the first Indian to become a Grandmaster in 2023.

He’s also the 28th GM to emerge from Tamil Nadu.

“Congratulations to GM Pranesh on an excellent performance. He won with an incredible score” tweeted Viswanathan Anand, India’s first GM and five-time World Champion.